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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
so last Saturday my car got smacked by someone *and luckily she had insurance* trying to changes lanes and apparently didn't see my 20 foot white car LOL. so I had my insurance come out and do a quote and came up with about 3200 *with oe parts* in damage and since I am trying to avoid paying my 500 deductible I had "her" insurance come out and look at the car and they came out with about 2800 in damage. and heres the kicker, he did the quote with after market parts and "refurbished" parts! so I REALLY don't want after market parts going on my car esp. with the head light. so if I go through her company to get car fixed. will they make the body shop that I get my car fixed at use after market parts and such? or do I have a say in what kind of quality parts I have them install? right now I am waiting for her insurance to take blame and since they cant "get a hold" of the her to get a statement of the accident. even thought the police report says its her fault and she got a ticket for un safe lane change. they still need her to tell what happened before they take blame. I am also trying to get her insurance to pay for a rental. I don't have much experience with this kind of thing so is this normal? anything I should keep an eye out for when dealing with insurance company and body repairs? how do I know the body shop I pick is a good one? and if I do go through my insurance company, do I go with there "partnership" body shops? because they have a "life time warrantees". thanks matt



 

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You could pick up the hood, fender,headlight and an ES bumper with fogs for probably 1/3 of her insurance settlement offer from a salvage yard and keep the change.

Thats the route I would go. Find them in excellent shape and you should be good to go with plenty of mod money!
 

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Hah - the ins. co. totaled out one of my Concordes a year ago from the identical damage on the opposite side (a '99 with over 180k miles on it at the time). I bought it back and it's still my daily driver (80 miles/day).
 

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anything I should keep an eye out for when dealing with insurance company and body repairs?

The best way to get results from an insurance co. is usually to comunicate with them in writing, Either by fax or email.. This lets them know you are keeping a record of the transaction..And it actually gets quicker results than the phone messages typically left back and forth...(I know of at least one company that trains it's staff in great detail, how to not answer their phone and use phone tag to extend a claim...Keep track of how many times ,if ever, the claim rep actually answers when you call or you get voice mail...)If you talk to them on the phone send them a quick letter detailling the phone call afterwards..

If it was not your fault the laws in each state are somewhat different as to your rights...Generally you only need to get 1 estimate from a body shop that you want to use if the other co pays, since your ins. co has already estimated it at 3200 if you find a body shop that agrees with this estimate this is what the other parties company will have to pay (with no deductable from you)...They also will pay for a comparable rental car(not a Cadillac but not a Hyundai) from the first day of the accident untill the car is repaired if the car is not driveable...If the headlight is broke then the car is not safely drivable....Sometimes to get OE parts you will have to argue with them, The best way is to get your body shop to do a estimate using them .. There is a page in the owners manual under "care and appearence" that has wording similar to " Use onlt OE parts in order to maintain the appearence and SAFETY of your Dodge vehicle" Copy this page and attach it to the estimate...As a rule salvage yard sheet metal parts are better than aftermarket ones, they are Original parts the same age as your original ones...

If you use your ins. co to get the repairs done you will have to follow their rules since you have a contract with them...If the other ins. co pays you can be a little more demanding to make sure things go your way..The other ins co is insuring the other driver and car, they have caused you damage and it is the driver's responsibility to pay for this damage, they have paid their ins. company to pay for the damage that they caused....And remember niether insurance claim adjuster is working for your best interest, they are all trying to save money for their company( that is their primary job description)..

One other caution, find out the actual value of your car first, Do not submit an estimate near 80% of the actual value... Unless you want your car totalled by the insurance company..

Good Luck!
 

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Hi Peva, this is Vega. I also have a 99 Intrepid with 180K and was considering dropping my collision coverage with $500 deductible. I pay $180 a year for it. Do you think I should keep the collision coverage, because if I do get in an accident that is my fault, I'm already out the 500 plus the 180 for a total of $680. If they only give me $2000 or so for the car, it might not be worth it .My question is.....at what price did they total your car?
How much was it to fix that kind of damage to your car? At what price did you buy it back?
 

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To add to what lextrep said: If the accident is the other driver's fault and you feel the other driver's insurance co. is not being reasonable (with the price on repairs or a total out or whatever), you would sue the other driver - not his/her insurance company. Sometimes their ins. co. will start cooperating if you let them know you know that that is how it works and if they don't start being more reasonable, you are no longer dealing with them but will be suing their policy holder (don't bluff - don't tell them that unless you are going to follow thru with it). They want to avoid getting a reputation that they are the cause of their policy holders getting sued for them being hard to deal with on claims.

I have found that in the last 5 or so years, insurance companies are getting more hardball and take-it-or-leave-it in how they deal with you. And as lextrep said, they are trained in how to lowball you and wear you down.

Hi Peva, this is Vega. I also have a 99 Intrepid with 180K and was considering dropping my collision coverage with $500 deductible. I pay $180 a year for it. Do you think I should keep the collision coverage, because if I do get in an accident that is my fault, I'm already out the 500 plus the 180 for a total of $680. If they only give me $2000 or so for the car, it might not be worth it .My question is.....at what price did they total your car?
How much was it to fix that kind of damage to your car? At what price did you buy it back?
I believe they gave me something like $3200, and bought it back for around $475 or $500. Haven't repaired it yet other than I did replace the broken headlight of course. Will eventually get around to it. I happen to be replacing the timing chain, water pump, oil pump, and valve seals this weekend (actually continuing that from last weekend). After that claim, Travelers actually dropped my collision coverage - wasn't my option. I'm not sure that was due to its having been totalled or what.

Yeah - the value of our cars with close to 200k miles is very low, and if you do have a claim, it isn't going to take much damage at all for them to total it out. You could certainly justify dropping your collision coverage.

BTW - I don't know if it's like this in other states, but here in VA, if the car is more than so many years old, they do not put a salvage title on it even though it is considred totaled by the ins. co. I think they told me the cut off was something like 6 or 7 years. A different ins. co. totaled out another one of my cars about 10 years ago (I also bought it back), and it too was not retitled as salvage - that law must have been in effect back then too even though I wasn't aware of it - at the time, I just thought they overlooked doing that.
 

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I would talk to my own insurance agent, and tell them I want oem parts and I want it done right. Give the agent a copy of the police report and any other info about the other driver and her insurance co.
It is your agents job to argue with the other driver's insurance co about who pays what.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
well I would love to say there is new news, but there isn't. the other persons insurance has yet to get back to me. so I talked to my insurance broker and he said to Not go through my insurance *didn't have time to ask why not* and since he is on the car insurance side he cant really tell me what to do but he did seem to echo what some of you'll said about talking about retaining or if I really need to. actually go through with it so he gave me a number to a guy that sells pre-paid leagel. so I am waiting for him to call me back. at this point it seems as though it will never be done! I sure do miss my car :( he did tell me that the other insurance company does NOT need the other person to give a statement to cary on with the claim so I am a bit pissed about that. just another way to stall the problem. anyway heres a pic of my car in one of my favorite pics. it was Christmas day last year. it pretty much never snows here on or around Christmas so this was different.

 

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I didn't read what everyone else wrote but you can go to any shop you want to have the car fixed. My dad does body work and a truck with a trailer backed into my old first gen. The insurance company cut my parents a check for $1000 and my dad put the car back together with parts from pick-n-pull. The best part was that the parts were already white so he saved a bunch of money by not having to paint them.
 

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well I would love to say there is new news, but there isn't. the other persons insurance has yet to get back to me. so I talked to my insurance broker and he said to Not go through my insurance *didn't have time to ask why not* and since he is on the car insurance side he cant really tell me what to do but he did seem to echo what some of you'll said about talking about retaining or if I really need to. actually go through with it so he gave me a number to a guy that sells pre-paid leagel. so I am waiting for him to call me back. at this point it seems as though it will never be done! I sure do miss my car :( he did tell me that the other insurance company does NOT need the other person to give a statement to cary on with the claim so I am a bit pissed about that. just another way to stall the problem. anyway heres a pic of my car in one of my favorite pics. it was Christmas day last year. it pretty much never snows here on or around Christmas so this was different.

Yeah - I think it's your choice whether you go thru your insurance company or sue the other driver. I would get the other ins. co. off their butts by telling them that if you don't hear back from them by such-and-such a date (give them 3 days), you will be suing their policy hoilder in small claims court - that you are renting another car and they will be paying for it until things get settled. Don't bluff, but don't pussy foot around. You don't need a lwayer. Small claims court. Your agent is a doofus - telling you to hire a lwayer and him not getting your ins. co. involved? I don't think so.
 

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Yeah - I think it's your choice whether you go thru your insurance company or sue the other driver. I would get the other ins. co. off their butts by telling them that if you don't hear back from them by such-and-such a date (give them 3 days), you will be suing their policy hoilder in small claims court - that you are renting another car and they will be paying for it until things get settled. Don't bluff, but don't pussy foot around. You don't need a lwayer. Small claims court. Your agent is a doofus - telling you to hire a lwayer and him not getting your ins. co. involved? I don't think so.
Yes now it is time to get the ins co off their butt..You need to call the other co. write down the entire conversation (or record it if it is legal in your state do do so) ..Ask everyone you talk to for their name and extension #, even the person that answers the phone...Ask to speak to the claim supervisor, do not leave a voicemail hold for them you may have to call back and tell the receptionist you are going to hold for them, you need to speak to a live person(be persistant and demanding)...do not give them any details about the accident other than what is on the police report, tell them you need to know where to pick up your rental car, and give them 2 hours to arange for it(most companies can do this from their computer as you wait)...In your conversation mention that you are documenting the conversation and will send a copy to them and their insured(mention them by name), list a copy to their insured on all coresponence to them( the other person is ultimately reponsible for any damages ,their ins. co is being paid by them to handle this)...Don't be afraid to mention you are missing work or school or family events, etc. because you have no car due to the "negligent action of their insured "...Tell them which body shop you are going to take the car to and remind them that storage charges are their responsibility also..Do not bluff make sure you can and will do what you say you will,if you tell them you are going to rent a car and they will have to pay for it , then be prepared to go rent a car if needed...Call them back in 2 hours if you do not get a response , Do not ever wait for them to call you back , get their toll free # and burn it up, The key is getting them to pay for a comparable rental car, then they have a little stake in getting everything handled in a timely manner...You should be in a rental car within 1 day and your car should at least be at a body shop within 3 days...And document everything and send copies to the claim supervisor..They do not like getting mail of faxes that their supervisors may see also..But they do get points for their claim settlement percentages..

It is normal for them to TRY to delay everything to save them money, this is what they get paid for(they are supposed to maintian THEIR customers while spending the least amount of money to keep THEIR customers satisfied)...You have to convince them that it will be easier and cheaper to get you taken care of quickly...And that THEIR customer (the at fault person) will not be satisfied by getting letters from you wanting them to pay large amounts of $ for you to rent a car and fix your car...


If you have full coverage ins. your company should also be willing to repair your car (less your chosen deductible and rental car ,unless you are paying for this coverage...Time to actually read your policy to see what you are paying for)..But you should come out ahead if you are persistant with the other parties company..

Remember to be careful with the amount of the repair though, because the book value of Intrepids is not the best, and you want to have them fix your car not total it..
Good luck!
 
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